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Many of us in Edmonton woke to disheartening news of attempted suspected acts of terrorism in our community.

We celebrate the heroism of our Edmonton Police Service in bringing the suspect into custody alive. We pray for “refuah shleimah”, a complete and total recovery for Const. Mike Chernyk and the other victims. We are thankful that the acts of violence committed yesterday were limited in their scope with no known loss of life.

We condemn any attempt to justify acts of terror and wish to make clear that savage acts lead to a world of anarchy, vengeance and immorality.

We stand with Edmontonians of all backgrounds and are committed to working towards peace and understanding. We are proud to support and work with organizations such as the Edmonton Interfaith Centre, Canadian Multicultural Education Foundation and others. We are a place of safety and refuge for members of the LGBTQ community. We are also a place that welcomes diverse understandings of who or what God is and those to whom the idea of a deity does not resonate.

Through mutual respect and dialogue, we break down walls of division and otherness. Our work is centered around moving from ideas of “Us” and “Them” to the understanding that we are all interconnected and need the support of our everyone around us.

Martin Luther King, Jr. taught us that “Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.” Hatred and extremism cannot be overcome with more hatred and extremism, so we commit ourselves to doing the sacred work of bridge building and “Tikkun Olam”, repairing the brokenness in the world.

Heavenly Guide,
Hand of love and shelter,
Grant the victims of terror Your protection,
Your wholeness and healing,
And Your peace.

– Alden Solovy